VoltAero’s Cassio 330 full-scale cabin mockup.
VoltAero has selected Avidyne for the development and supply of avionics to equip the Cassio 330 in an exclusive agreement, establishing a long-term relationship that includes customised software specifically tailored for the electric-hybrid operations of this clean-sheet design aircraft.
The Cassio 330 will be equipped with a glass cockpit incorporating Avidyne’s new-generation Quantum 14-inch displays in a dual PFD/MFD (Primary Flight Display/Multi-function Display) configuration. In addition to the screens’ significant size, the Quantum displays provide brightness and synthetic vision system (SVS) capabilities at 4K resolution, as well as processor performance improvements over legacy systems.
Avidyne will customize the avionics’ human-machine interface (HMI) specifically for the Cassio 330’s flight operations, significantly facilitating the pilot workload while managing the aircraft’s electric-hybrid propulsion system.
By accumulating and processing all aircraft information and delivering it in an intuitive manner, the avionics suite will simplify the pilot’s decision-making process, as well as improve flight safety and simplify pilot training. Additionally, the avionics are designed for the connected aircraft environment.
“In developing an all-new airplane family to set the standards for electric aircraft, our exclusive agreement with Avidyne ensures that Cassio’s avionics are just as advanced, innovative and capable for the future operators,” says Jean Botti, VoltAero’s CEO and Chief Technical Officer.
The Avidyne Corporation is a market leader in the design and manufacturing of integrated avionics systems for the aviation community. All of its products are designed and manufactured in the U.S., with the company’s headquarters in Melbourne, Florida.
Avidyne President Dan Schwinn says: “The Quantum open avionics platform has been specifically developed to meet the unique requirements of the next generation of hybrid aircraft, and is well aligned to support the Cassio 300’s advanced hybrid electric systems and aircraft missions.”
The Cassio 330 is the first of three Cassio aircraft versions to be developed by VoltAero for seating capacities of up to 12 people. VoltAero unveiled its first Cassio 330 prototype at the Paris Air Show, where Avydine’s Quantum avionics suite was also shown for the first time, incorporated in VoltAero’s full-scale Cassio 330 cabin mockup on its exhibit stand.
Designed with a five-seat cabin, the Cassio 330 will be powered by a 330-kilowatt electric-hybrid propulsion system. The follow-on six-seat Cassio 480 will have an electric-hybrid propulsion power of 480 kilowatts, while the Cassio 600 is sized at a 12-seat capacity with electric-hybrid propulsion power of 600 kilowatts. All three versions share a high degree of commonality as a result of VoltAero’s modular design strategy.
The VoltAero propulsion concept is unique: Cassio aircraft will utilize electric motors in the aft fuselage-mounted hybrid propulsion unit for all-electric power during taxi, takeoff, primary flight (if the distance traveled is less than 150 km.), and landing. The hybrid feature – with an internal combustion engine – comes into play as a range extender, recharging the batteries while in flight.
Additionally, this hybrid element serves as a backup in the event of a problem with the electric propulsion, ensuring true fail-safe functionality. In addition, it has the capability to use sustainable fuels, including biofuel and hydrogen.
VoltAero will assemble the Cassio aircraft in a purpose-built facility at the Rochefort Charente-Maritime Airport in France’s Nouvelle-Aquitaine region.
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